Everyday I assist companies who have no idea how they determined their sponsorship budget, nor how they actually measure the impact of those expenditures on the bottom line. It’s not uncommon. Most marketing departments simply have a line item, called “Sponsorships”. When a regional or industry colleague calls and asks if they’d like to sponsor an event – it’s usually just a matter of whether the audience is relevant and if there’s budget left.
You’re losing money on your sponsorship investment. And you’re letting those companies who are coordinating these events off the hook. Your company can get better exposure, better results, spend less money… and target the exact prospects you’re seeking.
Here are 10 questions to help you evaluate your next sponsorship opportunity:
- What are the outcomes of the sponsorship that are going to matter to your organization? Don’t be fooled by stats and things that are easy to measure.
- What are the benchmarks of previous sponsorships opportunities that you’ve acquired? What are your goals with respect to them? Be sure they’re as specific as possible (“200 leads from women aged 30-55?).
- What is the return on each of those goals that are reached? How do they compare with your organization’s priorities?
- Do those objectives align with core drivers of your business.
- What metrics do you apply to other marketing mediums that can be applied to your sponsorship? (ie. close ratios, lead time, etc.)
- What are the emotional and behavioral states of the prospects you’ll be reaching? It’s not enough to understand their demographics – you need to ensure the intent is there as well.
- Utilizing primary research, are organizations going to be present that will drive business to you through their audience? Or are you just getting banner space on a website?
- How much money are you saving through your sponsorship? If you’re acquiring customers through sponsorships, you can save money by reducing sales travel and entertainment expenses that are typically associated with nurturing leads.
- How much of your customer base would be impacted by your sponsorship? How much of the sponsorship’s target would be interested in your products and services? If it’s 20%, you’re on the right track.
- How are you going to capture data? Capture data and then use the data to engage in meaningful conversations with your audience post-sponsorship.
If you’re a company who offers sponsorships, can you help answer these questions? By ensuring that your sponsors get a positive return on their sponsorship investment not only can you sleep easier – you can better evaluate the value of your sponsorship opportunities. Many companies underestimate their sponsorship by focusing on how many sponsor dollars they need rather than evaluating the value of their audience on sponsors!
This list was inspired by IEG’s 10 Factors Critical to Sponsorship.
This post was written by Julie Grice
Julie is the founder and CEO of Smart Sponsorship, a marketing firm specializing in assisting businesses to maximize their return on investment on sponsorship expenditures. Smart Sponsorship also assists companies build and price comprehensive sponsorship solutions to maximize revenue and impact for their customers.
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